Sarah Barrett


Mrs. Sarah Margaret Barrett, July 25, 1922-Nov. 17, 2019.

Mrs. Sarah Margaret Barrett, daughter of the late Jesse Cleveland Counts and Margaret Lykes Counts, was born on July 25, 1922, in Birmingham, Ala. She attended Woodlawn High School, Montevallo College and graduated from Howard College, now known as Samford University.

She was a gifted musician, playing cello in middle school, high school and college, as well as playing piano throughout her life.

She was united in marriage to Dr. Arnold Lankford Barrett in 1948. This union was blessed with three children. Arnold preceded her in death on Dec. 6, 1976. Sarah Margaret was also preceded in death by her younger sister, Annie Belle Counts.

Sarah Margaret worked for many years at Webster Elementary in the library and also in the office. She moved to Fairview Elementary when it opened and retired from there. She served her family and community through helping lead Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts and serving as a band chaperone.

She spent her retirement years traveling to visit family in various states, driving alone with her dog until her late 80’s. She even traveled to China and celebrated her 83rd birthday while there.

Sarah Margaret was an active member of Webster United Methodist Church, where she played the piano for 40 years. She was also active in the Western District of United Methodist Women, serving a while as secretary.

Her beautiful life will forever be cherished in the lives of her children: daughters, Cynthia Barrett Sumerel (Jim) and Margaret “Peggy” Barrett Alexander (Joe), as well as son Layne Arnold Barrett (Angela); grandchildren, Jason Barrett (Krystin), Charlie Sumerel (Nicole), Matthew Barrett, Daniel Sumerel (Ashley), and Sarah Alexander (boyfriend Lance); honorary grandson, Jonathan Olund (girlfriend Hannah); great-grandchildren, Marley Barrett, Harper and Nora Sumerel. She also leaves her cherished dog, Mason, who was by her side as she passed, as well as many other grand dogs and kitties. She leaves behind two sisters, Jeanette Blackmon and Helene Counts; as well as two sisters-in-law, Rachel Murdock and Lantie Gibbs (Lawrence); in addition to a host of nieces, nephews, friends and church family.

The family would like to thank Kathy Jones, a very special caregiver, for her love and companionship with Sarah Margaret. In addition, Angie, Christine, Jessica and the others from Liberty Home Care and Hospice who helped care for her, as well as the entire staff at SECU Hospice House in Smithfield.

Visitation will be held on Friday, Nov. 22, from 6-8 p.m. at Appalachian Funeral Services, and the funeral will be held at Webster United Methodist Church at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019.

Flowers may be sent to Appalachian Funeral Services, Sylva, N.C. In lieu of flowers, a donation in Sarah Margaret’s memory may be made to Webster United Methodist Church, SECU Hospice House in Smithfield, N.C., or any other charity of one’s choosing.